Complexities Of Explosion & Fire Cases

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Nothing is more important than recovery and compensation for your loved one after a severe injury. 

Examples Of Complexities In Explosion Cases

Explosion and fire cases are complex, technical and expensive. Experience is essential. The attorneys of have represented plaintiffs in nearly every major explosion and fire case in the San Francisco Bay Area since 1975. Our experience handling these complex cases is invaluable to clients and families whose lives are changed by these sudden and catastrophic events.

Our lawyers know how to determine the causes and origins of pipeline explosions and fires, remaining current on pipeline failures caused by out-of-specification polyethylene pipes, inadequate pipe thickness, inadequate mechanical pipe couplings, poor welding and improper training to identify/classify outdoor leaks. We have successfully litigated against Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) and have a reputation that aids us in obtaining the best possible outcome.

In addition, we can bring together a team of experts to ensure that crucial physical evidence is preserved to be examined and evaluated. Our firm has the financial resources to do what is necessary to develop a case that gives you the best chance of recovering fair compensation.

Examples Of The Complexities In Explosion/Fire Cases

We invite you to read the summaries below to learn more about our history with these claims.

  • Walnut Creek gas explosion — A high-pressure pipeline transporting jet fuel erupted when accidentally struck by a backhoe. The resulting ball of fire exceeded 40 feet in height and killed five construction workers. Three welders employed by our client’s small welding company died in the explosion. The defendants argued that welding equipment ignited the fuel and was partially at fault. Our attorneys established that the ignition of the gas was unrelated to the welding equipment.
  • Oakland Hills firestorm — Our lawyers obtained a $4.75 million settlement for two people who suffered severe burns as they tried to escape the first major wildland-urban interface fire in the Bay Area. We established that the owners of an apartment complex (defendants) negligently ignored plans for fire retardant landscaping required by the city of Oakland. Instead, the complex left flammable eucalyptus trees that provided fuel for the fire. Our attorneys also established that the city of Oakland created a dangerous condition by failing to maintain an adequate fire exit on a local road despite numerous previous fires in the area.
  • Bayview Industrial Park explosion — Property and businesses were severely damaged when an illegal fireworks factory in San Francisco’s Bayview district caught fire and exploded. The force of the explosion literally blew the roof off the major warehouse. Our attorneys represented several businesses damaged by the explosion.

In addition, we have handled cases that relate to defective products. For example, a defective electric blanket caught fire in the middle of the night and burned our client, causing second- and third-degree burns over 70 percent of her body. The manufacturing company alleged that the fire had been arson. We successfully argued that the fire was a result of manufacturing and design defects and obtained a $2.3 million settlement.

A Free Consultation With One Of Our Lawyers

If you or a loved one has been injured in a fire or explosion, contact us as soon as possible at 415-421-7995 or toll-free at 888-745-2988. You can also email our San Francisco office to set up an appointment.

Jeffrey R. Smith

Jeffrey R. Smith

Managing Partner

Robert B. Waldsmith

Robert J. Waldsmith

Partner, 1999

William B. Smith

William B. Smith

Partner, 1978

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Vehicle Accidents

There are two things to establish in any motor vehicle accident case: the cause of the accident (fault) and the full cost of the injuries and losses. As we prepare your case, we will investigate both of these.


& Serious Injuries

People suffering from a brain injury, spinal cord injury or other severe injury will require extensive medical treatment, rehabilitative therapy and other long-term care.


Abuse & Molestation

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Claims related to sports and recreation injuries can be complicated. These cases often include issues involving waivers and the “assumption of risk” defense.


& Spine Injuries

When you or a loved one suffers a traumatic brain injury (TBI), life changes dramatically. Even mild TBIs can lead to years of recovery and rehabilitation.


Practice areas

The personal injury attorneys at the law firm of Abramson Smith Waldsmith LLP have more than 100 years of combined experience guiding clients through the legal process.

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